Today is the longest day of the year, the summer solstice. A time for rededication and rejoicing. I got up to watch the sunrise and gather a few herbs, still wet with dew–rose, yarrow, lavender, elderflower, sage, lemon balm–whatever felt right to me.
Tonight I will light a small bonfire in the yard, a way of being grateful for this longest day by trying to extend it just a bit. This Saturday in Finland, everyone will be lighting the Juhannus kokko, a bonfire.
As in much of Europe the pagan solstice celebration was combined into the Christian Feast of Saint John the Baptist. In Sweden and in some parts of Finland there will be dancing around midsummer poles (we Americans think of them as Maypoles, but in Scandinavia, May is still too early in the year for the abundance of flowers and greenery.)
I wish you a joyous day, in whatever way you wish to celebrate this longest span of sun and light. Blessed be.
I was going to write a nice descriptive post about the process of making dandelion wine, and maybe I will. But this weekend was so chock-full of busy-ness and activity that I can’t pull my mind together. I think I can manage a list, though. 🙂 Thank you for your indulgence.
- Weez was home all weekend, which was lovely. Three whole days together, working on the homestead.
- Got over myself and bought started veggie plants from the organic guy at the farmer’s market–tomatoes, basil, dill, lavender, cucumbers, sage.
- We planted potatoes and tomatoes in the driveway, which involved lots of shoveling dirt.
- We put together all the ingredients for this year’s dandelion wine. Hoping the magic will transform the smelly sludge into a potent elixir like it did last year!
- Bottled the Scottish 80 shilling ale from Northern Brewer. Can’t wait to try it out!
- Made huge progress on my Rose Garden Shawl from Jane Austen Knits 2012. Yay, lace knitting! (Or knitting lace, can never keep the two straight. If you have no idea what I’m talking about, count yourself lucky.)
- Weez constructed what I’m calling a chicken patio, putting down tiles along the front side of the coop. Pictures forthcoming.
- Enjoyed life enormously, used my muscles, sweated, lifted, planted, measured, tended, and loved.
I am so grateful for these days. This was our traditional “plant the garden” weekend here in the Berkshires, and it was a marvelous several days in our journey forward through the wheel of the year. I hope your weekend was equally satisfying. Blessings.
- determined that I most likely have a hamstring injury
- said injury was likely caused by over-zealous dandelion harvesting
- set 2.5 gallons of dandelion blossoms steeping in 2.5 gallons of hot water (step one of dandelion wine)–might as well benefit from over-zealous harvesting
- pulled weeds from about 20 feet of our fence-line
- renewed my hatred of bishop’s weed
- chopped down a mess of comfrey for the chickies
- got to row 100 of my new lace shawl (Rose Garden shawl from Jane Austen Knits magazine, link here to my project page on Ravelry)
- attempted to purchase more freeze-dried mealworms, gave up in disgust at horrible long line at Tractor Supply
- realized that my chickens really are stupid enough to want to sleep on the cold ground
- also learned that my chicken-catching routine can be minimized if I wait until after dark–I can snag two at a time!
A good day.
Check out my wife’s story of our garden.
I grew up in my grandparents’ house on 10 acres of land. My mother was no longer in the picture and my dad was often gone for months at a time in the Navy. My siblings and I would take vacations to our various aunts’ and uncles’ homes or go on their vacations with them. I shared a room with my sister when I was home from boarding school. There were always at least 10 of us and sometimes more at the dinner table. To this day I have trouble making small meals for just the 2 of us, especially mashed potatoes!
Now I don’t know if it was because we grew up without our own family house or if it’s the Irish in me but I’ve always longed for a place of my own. I finally realized in my 30’s it wasn’t going to happen unless I went back…
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